30¢ Orange (38), block of 21 (7 by 3), original gum, bright color and exceptionally fresh
This block and large block of 90¢ 1860, along with other lower denomination blocks, sold to Caspary privately (Ashbrook index card note)
Alfred H. Caspary, H. R. Harmer sale, 1/16-18/1956, lot 809, to Weill
Josiah K. Lilly, Jr., Siegel Auction Galleries, 2/7-8/1968, Sale 327, lot 18, to Weill (for Bechtel)
Stephen D. Bechtel, Sr. (collection sold privately in 1993; block sold privately to Zoellner)
Robert Zoellner, Siegel Auction Galleries, 10/8-10/1998, Sale 804, lot 148, to William H. Gross
CENSUS, LITERATURE AND EXHIBITION REFERENCES
ANPHILEX 1996 Invited Exhibits (Zoellner)
Fine overall; some minor reinforcements, small tears in a few bottom-row stamps and fourth stamp at top nicked from separation
SCOTT CATALOGUE VALUE (2019)
$60,900.00 as three blocks, four pairs and single
HISTORY AND COMMENTARY
The Switch from Black to Orange
Official correspondence between the Post Office and Toppan Carpenter reveals that the decision to print 30¢ stamps in orange followed a printing in black on stamp paper. The existence of imperforate 30¢ Black stamps created controversy years ago, when some philatelists argued that the black stamps were a legitimate issue. A brief history of the early approval and production process is worth telling.
Toppan Carpenter submitted proofs of the 30¢ stamp to Third Assistant Postmaster Zevely in June 1860, suggesting printing the stamps in black to highlight the engraving. The design was approved on June 27, 1860. On July 2 Toppan Carpenter sent Zevely plate proof sheets of the 12¢ and 30¢ in black to show that the design differences were sufficient to tell the stamps apart, even if both were black, and Zevely replied with approval for the 30¢ to be printed in black. On July 11 Toppan Carpenter wrote again to Zevely, giving their opinion that it would be difficult to adequately cancel the 30¢ stamps if they were black, and suggesting that the color should be switched to "buff." Zevely approved "orange buff" color, and Toppan Carpenter promised to deliver 280,000 stamps by July 31. As with all of the stamps in circulation when the Civil War broke out, the 30¢ was demonetized in the fall of 1861.